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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Dealer speaks out against automakers being allowed to keep defects quiet

> Update 3/1/2015 - GREAT VIDEO by NBC's WRC-TV: Dealer Jack Fitzgerald says that in the past, auto manufacturers have punished him financially for speaking out.
> Update 3/10/2015 - In this article published yesterday, Jack sums things up admirably: "People have lost lives on the road because manufacturers have hidden safety problems by delaying recalls, and forcing dealers to withhold critical information." 
> Update 3/11/2015 - Toyota, GM, and Ford are being sued for concealing the fact that their vehicles are susceptible to hackers wresting control from drivers, and Toyota has announced another recall involving defective software and electronics - this time raising safety issues about transmissions and steering. Wonder if dealerships were ordered to keep quiet about these issues.  

One of the auto industry's most appalling practices involves refusing to inform customers about known defects. Generally speaking, it falls under the heading "secret warranties," and Jack Fitzgerald, president of Fitzgerald's Auto Malls in Maryland is speaking out against the practice. Refusal to divulge defect information to customers is a racket that's been going on for decades.

Mr. Fitzgerald is uniquely qualified to address the issue since his dealership is massive in size and handles all brands. As one would expect, his efforts to promote free speech and full disclosure are being opposed by the auto industry.

Of course, the larger point is that keeping defects secret amounts to fraud, and should have been outlawed long ago at the federal level. The fact that automakers can get away with such crookedness further evidences the fact that our current system of government - local, state, and federal - is controlled not by the people it deceitfully claims to represent, but by powerful special interests such as those associated with the auto industry. Meanwhile, the blood-spattered scandals of murderous corporations like Toyota, GM, Takata, etc. ad nauseum continue unabated as the "Just Us" Department keeps watch to make sure no auto executive winds up in prison.

Were it not for public safety implications, it would be laughable that an auto dealer must ask government for permission to warn customers about manufacturing defects. Mr. Fitzgerald is to be applauded for daring to speak out against such a pervasively corrupt system.